Messiah : The Criteria
The Jewish tradition of "The Messiah" has its foundation in numerous biblical references, and understands "The Messiah" to be a human being - without any overtone of deity or divinity - who will bring about certain changes in the world and fulfill certain criteria before he can be acknowledged as "The Messiah".
First of all, he must be Jewish - "...you may appoint a king over you, whom the L-rd your G-d shall choose: one from among your brethren shall you set as king over you." (Deuteronomy 17:15)
He must be a member of the tribe of Judah - "The staff shall not depart from Judah, nor the sceptre from between his feet..." (Genesis 49:10)
To be a member of the tribe of Judah, the person must have a biological father who is a member of the tribe of Judah.
He must be a direct male descendant of King David and King Solomon, his son - "And when your days (David) are fulfilled, and you shall sleep with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who shall issue from your bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will make firm the throne of his kingdom forever..." (2 Samuel 7:12 - 13)
The genealogy of the New Testament is inconsistent. While it gives two accounts of the genealogy of Joseph, it states clearly that he is not the biological father of Jesus. One of the genealogies is through Nathan and not Solomon altogether!
He must gather the Jewish people from exile and return them to Israel -"And he shall set up a banner for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth." (Isaiah 11:12)
Are all Jews living in Israel? Have all Jews EVER lived in Israel since the time of Jesus?
He must rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem - "...and I will set my sanctuary in their midst forever and my tabernacle shall be with them.." (Ezekiel 37:26 - 27)
At last check, there is NO Temple in Jerusalem. And worse, it was shortly after Jesus died that the Temple was DESTROYED! Just the opposite of this prophecy!
He will rule at a time of world-wide peace - "...they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore." (Micah 4:3)
Have you seen a newspaper lately? Are we living in a state of complete world peace? Has there ever been peace since the time of Jesus?
He will rule at a time when the Jewish people will observe G-d's commandments - "My servant David shall be king over them; and they shall all have one shepherd. They shall follow My ordinances and be careful to observe My statutes." (Ezekiel 37:24)
The Torah is the Jewish guide to life, and its commandments are the ones referred to here. Do all Jews observe all the commandments? Christianity, in fact, often discourages observance of the commandments in Torah, in complete opposition to this prophecy.
He will rule at a time when all people will come to acknowledge and serve one G-d - "And it shall come to pass that from one new moon to another and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before Me, says the L-rd" (Isaiah 66:23)
there are still millions if not billions of people in the world today who adhere to paganistic and polytheistic religions. It is clear that we have not yet seen this period of human history unfold.
All of these criteria are best stated in the book of Ezekiel Chapter 37 verses 24-28:
And David my servant shall be king over them; and they shall all have one shepherd. they shall also follow My judgments and observe My statutes, and do them. And they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Yaakov my servant, in which your fathers have dwelt and they shall dwell there, they and their children, and their children's children forever; and my servant David shall be their prince forever. Moreover, I will make a covenant of peace with them, it shall be an everlasting covenant with them, which I will give them; and I will multiply them and I will set my sanctuary in the midst of them forevermore. And my tabernacle shall be with them: and I will be their G-d and they will be my people. Then the nations shall know that I am the L-rd who sanctifies Israel, when My sanctuary will be in the midst of them forevermore.
If an individual fails to fulfill even one of these conditions, then he cannot be "The Messiah." A careful analysis of these criteria shows us that to date, no one has fulfilled every condition.
Certainly NOT Jesus.